A peaceful trip through the Illinois countryside is an idyllic way to spend a day. What’s better than checking out a new diner or seeing a unique roadside attraction? In central Illinois, there’s a town that’s known for both its rich history and its enchanting culture of art. For an unforgettable journey, this day trip to historic Arcola, Illinois, may be just what you’re looking for.

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Between the simplicity of the Amish culture and the offbeat charm of the downtown area, it’s easy to see why so many have worked Arcola into their travel plans. It’s an enchanting and enriching historic small town that has plenty of quirkiness to pack into a fun-filled day. Have you ever taken a day trip to historic Arcola, Illinois? What would you want to visit first?

If you need some belly fuel for the ride home, make sure to check out Yoder’s Kitchen, 1195 E. Columbia St. — just 15 minutes outside Arcola in the beautiful city of Arthur, Illinois.

And before you head out for your road trip, be sure to check out our Ultimate Road Trip Packing List!

The Ultimate Road Trip Packing List by OnlyInYourState

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Small Towns In Illinois

What are the best small towns in Illinois?

Some of the best small towns in Illinois are:

  • Galena: This popular small-town destination is one of the most enchanting small towns in Illinois, with beautiful 19th-century buildings, a great scene for foodies, and lots of outdoor recreation opportunities.
  • Mount Carroll: Known as the New England of the midwest, Mount Carroll features a 25-acre park, a performance venue, a thriving downtown, and a historic inn built in 1886, among other historic buildings.
  • Fulton: Situated along the banks of the Mississippi River, Fulton has a rich Dutch heritage and historic downtown listed on the National Register of Historic Places – plus a towering windmill originally manufactured in the Netherlands before being assembled in Fulton.

What are the best small towns near Chicago?

Some of the best small towns near Chicago are the following:

  • Geneva, Illinois: A scenic small town along the Fox River which has long welcomed travelers looking for respite, featuring a riverfront resort.
  • Ottawa, Illinois: Known as the gateway to Starved Rock State Park, this town is a great destination for nature lovers. Ottawa also has a historic downtown with beautiful architecture and plenty of modern eateries.
  • Long Grove, Illinois: From its quirky sock monkey museum to its cobblestone streets and boutique shops, Long Grove is a unique Illinois destination that’s full of charm.

What is the smallest town population in Illinois?

Valley City, Illinois, a village located in Pike County, has a population of only 14 people as of the 2020 census. This makes it the smallest town population in Illinois.

More towns with the smallest populations in Illinois are:

  • Florence, Illinois: population of 18
  • Bentley, Illinois: population of 28
  • Time, Illinois: population of 26
  • Floraville, Illinois: population of 30

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